Exchange mail and mobile apps

The closest thing my workplace has to an IT manager has recently sent an email to everyone.

If you currently access your •• email account on a mobile device (mobile phone, tablet, iPad etc.) using a native mail app (such as Apple Mail, Gmail, Samsung Email etc.) you may have recently experienced degraded performance or in some cases been unable to send or receive emails entirely. This is due to Microsoft winding down support for the connection between Exchange (the email service) and native mail applications.

If you wish to access your ** emails on a mobile device, it is strongly recommended that you switch to the Microsoft Outlook app (if you have not already done so). Failure to do so may result in loss of access to your emails on your mobile device/s.

I’ve not read anything about this anywhere else, and a (fairly quick, admittedly) search hasn’t shown up anything to confirm this “winding down”.

Does anyone know anything about this?

This does not sound right to me. I manage Microsoft 365 for $work and the first thing that comes to mind that might be applicable is that Microsoft is deprecating Basic Authentication protocols in favor of Modern Authentication (OAuth2). On mobile devices, the solution for us was to delete and recreate the Microsoft account on the mobile device. All native mobile apps seem to work just fine for us.

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Our workplace started requiring us to use Outlook rather than the native iOS mail client, but that’s related to having switched to having device management (using Microsoft’s InTune). Outlook is now set up as a secure app inside the corporate “container”, so (for example) you can’t cut and paste out of an email, and links open in a copy of Edge that’s controlled by device management rather than in Safari.


@mkl, thanks. Something changed a few months ago, when we began to need authorisation from the Authenticator (sounds like a Bond villain’s sidekick). For some while, his stock response to any email problem has been “use Outlook”, and it didn’t sound right to me either. I’ve asked him for some documentation but he’s not replied to my email.

@dave6, your position appears more corporate policy than anything inflicted by MS.

I haven’t heard a peep. And I wouldn’t be surprised not to hear a peep until I asked.

I don’t know if Authenticator is helping security, but it sure interferes with me using email.

My guess is it’s this:

Probably your IT department doesn’t want to deal with supporting the configuration of other clients. If it is this, though, this is typical IT obfuscation.

That, I think, is the change which was implemented a few months ago, and which I mentioned in my second post here. I’m quite certain he doesn’t want to deal with other clients; the change was introduced without warning and when I asked about it, he gave his usual “use Outlook” response.

“obfuscation” is a kinder description than I’d use.

He’s replied to me. Deprecation of basic authentication was indeed the issue, although how that could reasonably give rise to the scaremongering in the email (which I quoted) is hard to understand.

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I suspect the response is the typical IT Support “path of least resistance” or “whatever makes my job easier”. Just mandate one (Microsoft) product rather than having to provide information on how to configure third party mail clients for enhanced authentication.